The ever-growing number of cameras that are watching us in large cities often
undermines the benefits of CCTV. Many questions have been raised over recent years
about whether the CCTV cameras are there for our protection or if they are there to
create more of a Big Brother society. As ever there are two sides to every argument, one
of these being that the benefits of having constant security surveillance is that it deters
crimes. The opposing argument to this is the questioning of their effectiveness and
whether it is worth it./p>
It cannot be denied that CCTV can be helpful in deterring public crimes. Though there is
more to it than simply having a camera installed, it has been proven that the wrong
placement of a CCTV camera will not only make it capture useless footage but it will also
go unnoticed and not deter criminals. However, if CCTV is installed correctly then
research has shown that it has reduced property crime and premeditated crime. Some of
the crime rates that CCTV has had a positive impact on have been store break-ins, car
related theft and public muggings.
Of course measuring the success of CCTV isn’t the easiest of tasks; this is because
generally it works as a preventative. Retail stores are perhaps the best area to look at to
see how effective CCTV cameras can be. The majority of us know when we enter a shop
that we are being monitored by several security cameras and this pretty effectively
deters shoplifting. Another benefit of CCTV is that it covers employees and employers
when it comes to making claims or providing evidence against false claims.
CCTV is also believed to improve employee effectiveness, because they re being watched
they are more likely to do their job than to become idle. Taking these points into
consideration allows you to see that there are definite benefits to CCTV for businesses
and even in homes, but there are downsides too.
Although CCTVs can reduce the number of public incidents, research has shown that
they hardly do anything in reducing the number of passion related crimes. There is also
the argument that by having CCTV in some areas, the deterred crimes are simply being
moved a few streets away to an area that doesn’t have as good security.
As a nation we are pretty used to being recorded, but there are many amongst us who
feel we are going down the slippery path to a “1984” state. If there is 1 camera for every
14 people and no real research to suggest its effectiveness then this has to raise the
question of whether so many cameras are worthwhile? It costs a lot of money to install
security and surveillance cameras, especially if it isn’t a guaranteed way to deter crime.
It also raises the question of people’s human rights. Cameras are invasive and are able to
track you pretty much wherever you go and there are few people who support this idea.
Finding a line between privacy and protection is always going to be a difficult thing to